Slow Down the City: A Month of Alternative Transportation Workshops at Civic Space

Slow Down the City - Promo Card

Slow Down the City: A Series of Alternative Transportation Events throughout the Month of July

We’re pleased to announce a month-long series of workshops here at CIVIC SPACE that will explore the pace of our automotive city and how we might slow it down with our actions and transportation choices. We’ll be teaming with with local bike co-op City Cyclery and local longboarder Troy Linton to host four events throughout the month of July that will use skill sharing and group rides to open a dialog about the pace of Windsor.

All Slow Down the City events are free and open to everyone. Bring your bike, board, or come without. Looking forward to seeing you there!

Monday, July 8th (7pm) – Workshop #1: Bike Maintenance with City Cyclery

Monday, July 22nd (7pm) – Workshop #2: Bike Restoration with City Cyclery

Thursday, July 25th (7pm) – Workshop #3: Longboarding with Troy Linton

Monday, July 29th (7pm) – Workshop #4: Group Slow Ride


Exploring Urban Ecology with Sam Lefort (a look back at our week of workshops)

It was a quick week, but such an excellent start to our Artist-in-Residence program at CIVIC SPACE. Sam Lefort, bee lover, excellent designer, and most generous workshop host spent the week teaching members of the Windsor-Essex (and beyond) community about a range of sustainably minded practices and interventions, hopefully many of which will be carried on in numerous locations around the region.

We’re already looking forward to bringing Sam back, but in the meantime, here’s a look at the week (and possibly what you missed!)…

Continue reading “Exploring Urban Ecology with Sam Lefort (a look back at our week of workshops)”

Setting Up for the Urban Ecology Workshops

Today, we’re pleased to kick off the first workshop from our first artist-in-residence at CIVIC SPACE! Samantha Lefort will host a series of workshops this week on Urban Ecology — starting today at 3pm with Urban Apiaries (BEES AND YOU, IN THE URBAN LANDSCAPE).

Need to know more? Check out more info on Windsor’s CBC Radio’s The Bridge in an interview with Sam!

Sam and Hiba spent the bulk of Monday preparing the space and materials for the workshops.

Some prep for the window installation and urban container gardening workshop.

Box of supplies!

We also put up some signage in the window … translating Sam’s banner graphic into a vinyl cut.

Justin and Sam at work.

Can’t wait to see all of this come together.

Sam’s to-do list on some ledger sheets she found in an attic in Philadelphia.

Bundles of bamboo.

Hiba prepping the vinyl transfer tape.

The cut turned out well — and white looks great on the windows.

I think we’ll be changing our other graphics to white as well.

Free workshops all week on making our city a more livable place! Check out the details here:

Also, we’re still looking for some moss for Thursday night’s workshop– anyone have any leads?

Getting Reacquainted with the Neighbourhood

I took a leisurely bike ride around the neighbourhood yesterday afternoon. It’s been a while since I’ve taken the time to explore, to spend time paying attention to things. I basically wanted an update on the neighbourhood that Danielle and I had lived in a couple years ago.

The eastern edge of Sandwich is quieter than ever. Four blocks of houses (well at least one side of the street for four blocks) is boarded up, it’s beginning to feel like it will be a very long time before that situation is sorted out between the city and the bridge company.

In the meantime, the vacancies and the strange empty spaces created by that situation are increasingly curious. Those stairs need to be used in some kind of project.

Continue reading “Getting Reacquainted with the Neighbourhood”

Commuter School

parking lots on University of Windsor campus

I saw an article on GOOD Magazine today that talked about initiatives that US colleges on the west coast are taking on to encourage more students biking to school. Among these initiatives are giving out free bus passes, car and bike sharing programs, shortening the school week and even paying students not to drive.

The University of Windsor (partly pictured above), as a commuter school, is essentially surrounded by parking lots. For some students, coming up from Essex County or even Tecumseh, taking public transit is not an option… (Let’s forget that there was once a commuter train that went from Kingsville, through Essex, and into Windsor). There are a number of obstacles for other students to get to school, even if they live within range of Transit Windsor’s routes—namely that it takes far too long to get to school by bus and to take a bicycle anywhere but along the riverfront is taking your life into your own hands. 

There are proposed solutions to make the campus into more of a campus, with a sustained student body, and less of a drive-thru educational depot, such as increasing the cost of parking even more, and I’m wondering if the next few years might not be especially crucial to shift the student body onto public transit. With the economy so depressed, affording gas, insurance, parking, and car payments may be impossible, so why isn’t there another referendum to try to instate a University bus pass? Especially for students at Lebel, making it to main campus and back again in time for classes that are back to back is difficult, what if there was an electric shuttle that could get you back and forth in five minutes? How much would you be willing to add to your tuition for that? What if there was a dedicated bike path from Lebel to main campus? What if there was a bike sharing program with drop-off points at Lebel, the St Denis Centre, Odette and the Library? Should we buy some bikes and make our own bike-sharing program?

Bamboo Bike GROWN


Have you guys looked into your back yard and thought: “OH BOY I wish I could grow a field full of bikes.” I know I haven’t – BUT THIS GUY DID!

Based out of Santa Cruz, California, Graig Calfee is a bike maker. Sounds neat, so what? Check this quote from the Wired article:

To increase production and improve design, Craig is experimenting with growing bamboo into pre-formed shapes in the field.

By forcing the bamboo to grow through carefully placed barriers, the naturally straight plant grows with the bends and curves he needs for frames and other components.

Hey, is that your grey matter splattered behind you on the wall, or is it mine? Because my brain just exploded. That’s incredible! But what is even more incredible is the way he invisions mass-production of these bikes, one more quote:

“A factory in a field. You can have row after row of bamboo growing into the right structures for bike frames.”



 UPDATE: I forgot to post his website, give it a look! Calfee Design

LED Light Systems for Bikes

I totally had a nerdgasm when I saw this. It’s an LED Light System for your bike. Developed by co-founder of the lovely and informative, Dan Goldwater. Here’s the site to get one. It’s not that bad actually, it’s 64.99USD. Not a bad investment, considering that you will always be seen riding around at night. Oh man, I’m definately considering it.

Once more, I found this beauty on Boing Boing Gadgets.